WordPress Plugins and Themes with Known Issues

A list of WordPress plugins, themes, and functions that are not supported and/or require workarounds.

Contributors: Aleksandr Korolyov.


This page lists WordPress plugins, themes, and functions that may not function as expected or are currently problematic on the Pantheon platform. This is not a comprehensive list (see other issues). We continually update it as problems are reported and/or solved. If you are aware of any modules or plugins that do not work as expected, please contact support.

We do not prevent you from installing and using these plugins or themes. However, we cannot provide support for incompatible plugins and themes, or if they are used against the guidance provided here.

Plugin & Theme Maintainers: If your work is listed here, please reach out to us. We're happy to help provide information that can lead to conflict resolutions between your code and the platform.

If your work is already updated but still listed here, let us know so we can remove it, or submit a pull request.

Assumed Write Access

Some plugins and themes are built on the assumption that the CMS has write access to the entire filesystem. While this is usually true of standard LAMP/LEMP stack server configuration, Pantheon and other specialized platforms do not. This can result in runtime errors when the software can't write to locations in the code base in Test and Live environments.

See Use the Pantheon WebOps Workflow for more information on how Pantheon differentiates "code" from "files".

The solution to these issues is usually to create a symlink from the plugin's expected write location to a location in the writable filesystem (/sites/default/files for Drupal, wp-content/uploads for WordPress). This process is detailed in Using Extensions That Assume Write Access.

The following is a list of plugins that assumes write access, and the specific file or folder that needs to be symlinked to resolve:


Assumed Write Path


All-in-One WP Migration


The platform is not designed for large backup files. You can download full backups from the Site Dashboard. See below for additional options.




See the Autoptimize section below for other solutions.

Divi WordPress Theme & Visual Page Builder


Remember to repeat this process for each environment, including multidevs.

NextGEN Gallery


You can override this path on the plugin configuration page (/wp-admin/admin.php?page=ngg_other_options) to use wp-content/uploads/gallery/ instead of creating a symlink.






WPML - The WordPress Multilingual Plugin


See below For alternate solutions.

WP Fastest Cache


This plugin uses is_dir to verfiy the target directory, which will return false if the directory is a symlink. This causes a permissions error when deleting cache files.


There are several plugins and themes that have issues on Pantheon due to the way they access files. By defining the FS_METHOD as direct in wp-config.php above the line /* That's all, stop editing! Happy Pressing. */, we can easily avoid these issues:

    define('FS_METHOD', 'direct');

Plugins and Themes with issues resolved by this include:

AMP for WP – Accelerated Mobile Pages

Last reviewed: Dec 05 2019

Issue: Enabling the Mobile Redirection feature within AMP for WP sends a session cookie which conflicts with platform-level page caching. See the WordPress support forum for details.

Solution: Disable the option for Mobile Redirection within the AMP for WP options page. Then handle mobile redirection via PHP within wp-config.php, for example:

if ((is_mobile())&&(strrpos($_SERVER['REQUEST_URI'],'amp') == false)) {
  header('HTTP/1.0 301 Moved Permanently');
  header('Location: https://'. $_SERVER['HTTP_HOST'] . $_SERVER['REQUEST_URI'] .'/amp');

  // Name transaction "redirect" in New Relic for improved reporting (optional).
  if (extension_loaded('newrelic')) {
function is_mobile() {
  if ( empty($_SERVER['HTTP_USER_AGENT']) ) {
          $is_mobile = false;
  elseif ( strpos($_SERVER['HTTP_USER_AGENT'], 'Mobile') !== false // many mobile devices (all iPhone, iPad, etc.)
          || strpos($_SERVER['HTTP_USER_AGENT'], 'Android') !== false
          || strpos($_SERVER['HTTP_USER_AGENT'], 'Silk/') !== false
          || strpos($_SERVER['HTTP_USER_AGENT'], 'Kindle') !== false
          || strpos($_SERVER['HTTP_USER_AGENT'], 'BlackBerry') !== false
          || strpos($_SERVER['HTTP_USER_AGENT'], 'Opera Mini') !== false
          || strpos($_SERVER['HTTP_USER_AGENT'], 'Opera Mobi') !== false ) {
                  $is_mobile = true;
  else {
          $is_mobile = false;
  return $is_mobile;


Last reviewed: Feb 10 2020

Issue: Autoptimize assumes write access to the site's codebase within the wp-content/resources directory, which is not granted on Test and Live environments on Pantheon by design. For additional details, see Using Extensions That Assume Write Access.

Solution: Configure Autoptimize to write files within the standard wp-content/uploads path for WordPress (wp-content/uploads/autoptimize) by adding the following to wp-config.php:

/** Changes location where Autoptimize stores optimized files */

Be sure to add this configuration above the comment to stop editing:

Example of Autoptimize configuration above the stop editing comment

For additional details, see the Autoptimize FAQ. An alternative solution is to create a symbolic link.

Better Search And Replace

Last reviewed: Sep 27 2019

Issue: Plugin is not accessible in Test or Live (read-only environments in Pantheon) due to the install_plugins capability check of the plugin. Follow this issue on the WordPress support forum.

Solution 1: There is an undocumented filter in place to override the capability check. Adding this in the your theme’s function.php can make it work:

function better_search_replace_cap_override() {
    return 'manage_options';
add_filter( 'bsr_capability', 'better_search_replace_cap_override' );

Solution 2: Use an alternative Search and Replace plugin like WP Migrate DB


Issue: Sessions are implemented in a way that will not allow it to function with the WP Native Sessions plugin, either installed as a regular plugin or an mu-plugin. Follow this issue on the WordPress support forum.

Issue: A low value set for "Check link every X hours" can consume a large amount of server resources.

Solution: Ensure that the value is set for the default of 72 hours or greater.

Caching Plugins

This includes but is not limited to:

Issue: Conflicts with platform-level page caching.

Solution: See Caching: Advanced Topics for details on how to bypass the platform page cache.

Coming Soon

Last reviewed: Oct 03 2018

Issue: Maintenance mode gives the ERR_TOO_MANY_REDIRECTS error in the frontend. This plugin uses 503 Header status - Service Temporarily Unavailable which creates a redirect loop. Please see this issue for more details regarding the error.

Solution: This plugin only works in the Coming Soon Mode on Pantheon, and you need to put content into the Page Settings > Message so the Coming Soon page won't appear as a blank white page.

Alternatively, if you don't want your site to be crawled by search engines, you can lock it via the platform and you can use a custom lock page.

Contact Form 7

Last reviewed: Feb 21 2019

Issue 1: This plugin relies on $_SERVER['SERVER_NAME'] and $_SERVER['SERVER_PORT'], which pass static values subject to change over time during routine platform maintenance.

Solution: Add the following to wp-config.php:


    $_SERVER['SERVER_PORT'] = 443;
  else {
    $_SERVER['SERVER_PORT'] = 80;

For more details, see SERVER_NAME and SERVER_PORT on Pantheon.

Issue 2: Local file attachments set in the admin panel cannot come from the uploads folder. As described in this plugin issue, the plugin code fails for upload directories that are symlinks.

Solution: Until the plugin is updated to allow symlink paths, you can commit your local attachment files to the code base in wp-content or another subdirectory thereof.

Constant Contact Forms

Last reviewed: Aug 24 2018

Issue: The Constant Contact Forms plugin adds dependencies using Composer and provides a .gitignore file which prevents these dependencies from being picked up by Git. This leads to problematic deployments as not all code moves forward to Test and Live.

Solution: Remove .gitignore files from the constant-contact-forms and constant-contact-forms/vendor/psr/log directories.

Disable REST API and Require JWT / OAuth Authentication

Last reviewed: Apr 01 2019

Issue: When this plugin is enabled along with WooCommerce, WP-CLI and Pantheon dashboard workflows like Cache Clear can fail. This issue may not happen for environments where WP-CLI is not installed (local machine, other platforms, etc):

Fatal error: Uncaught Error: Call to undefined method WP_Error::get_data() in /srv/bindings/.../code/wp-content/plugins/woocommerce/includes/cli/class-wc-cli-runner.php:64

For WooCommerce, the CLI runner needs some of the REST endpoints for it to function. The plugin is only allowing a specific set of paths for allowed access.

Solution: In the plugin.php file, edit the if ( ! is_user_logged_in() ) conditional to include a check for CLI PHP requests:

    if ( ! is_user_logged_in() && php_sapi_name() != 'cli' ) {

        // Only allow these endpoints: JWT Auth.
        $allowed_endpoints = array(
    $allowed_endpoints = apply_filters( 'reqauth/allowed_endpoints', $allowed_endpoints );

Divi WordPress Theme & Visual Page Builder

Last reviewed: Nov 27 2019

Issue: Divi Themes Visual Page Builder may produce the following error when attempting to edit pages because the page builder is attempting to write to three different nested folders in the web root:

.../data/Utils.php:758  ET_Core_Data_Utils::WPFS():
[ERROR]: Unable to write to filesystem. Please ensure that the web server process has write access to the WordPress directory.

Solution 1: The most reliable solution is to access the Divi Theme Options > Builder > Advanced section and disable Static CSS File Generation.

Solution 2:

  1. Create a symlink.

  2. Define the FS_METHOD in the wp-config.

Event Espresso

Last reviewed: Nov 15 2018

Issue: Event Espresso shows the error:

PHP Fatal error: Uncaught EE_Error: An attempt to access and/or write to a file on the server could not be completed due to a lack of sufficient credentials.

Solution: Define FS_METHOD.

EWWW Image Optimizer

Last reviewed: Oct 16 2018

Issue: EWWW Image Optimizer attempts to install and execute third party binary tools to perform image optimization, which is restricted on our platform. The error message is:

EWWW Image Optimizer uses jpegtran, optipng, pngout, pngquant, gifsicle, and cwebp. You are missing: jpegtran, optipng, gifsicle. Please install via the Settings Page or the Installation Instructions.

The solutions outlined in the EWWW documentation do not apply to Pantheon.

Solution: Use an alternative plugin like EWWW Image Optimizer Cloud, which is a cloud version of the plugin that executes the compression from an external service instead of the server. Another alternative that works well with the default configuration is Smush Image Compression and Optimization.


Last reviewed: Oct 15 2019

Issue: FacetWP conflicts with New Relic.

Solution: Disable New Relic when using FacetWP.

Fast Velocity Minify

Last reviewed: Oct 12 2019

Issue: Site suddenly shows a white screen of death.

Solution: Because the binding path can change on our Platform, the cache folder path may change. To manually reconfigure the cache path, go to Fast Velocity Minify's Settings tab, and click Cache Location. Remember to clear the cache from Pantheon and flush the Redis cache.

Force Login

Last reviewed: Jul 26 2018

Issue: This plugin appends a port number using $_SERVER['SERVER_PORT'] at the end of the URL when the user logs in to the site.

Solution: See Set SERVER_PORT Correctly.

Last reviewed: Feb 20 2020

Issue: This plugin sends two set-cookie headers in each response, which breaks caching on Pantheon's Global CDN. For example:

curl -I https://www.example.com
HTTP/2 200
cache-control: public, max-age=600
content-type: text/html; charset=UTF-8
server: nginx
set-cookie: cookielawinfo-checkbox-necessary=yes; expires=Thu, 20-Feb-2020 17:31:51 GMT; Max-Age=3600; path=/set-cookie: cookielawinfo-checkbox-non-necessary=yes; expires=Thu, 20-Feb-2020 17:31:51 GMT; Max-Age=3600; path=/x-pantheon-styx-hostname: styx-fe1-a-789d66bff9-tztp6
x-styx-req-id: 7f93c166-53fe-11ea-803e-b26d7703e33f
date: Thu, 20 Feb 2020 16:31:51 GMT
x-served-by: cache-mdw17379-MDW, cache-chi21146-CHI
x-cache: MISS, MISS
x-cache-hits: 0, 0
x-timer: S1582216311.492451,VS0,VE204
vary: Accept-Encoding, Cookie, Cookie
age: 0
accept-ranges: bytes
via: 1.1 varnish

Solution: Several users have reported that upgrading to the premium version of this plugin and disabling the included script blocker fixed the issue. For additional support, work with the plugin maintainers and review related documentation for the premium version.


Last reviewed: Nov 05 2019

Issue: Adding new libraries or content types from the H5P hub through the admin interface (or uploading large files from slow internet connections) can hit our max execution timeout, resulting in a 504 error:

H5P Timeout Error

While not a solution, re-running the Install process multiple times may result in success. You can also attempt to upload .hp5 files from your local computer. If local uploads hit the timeout, please try from a faster connection.


Last reviewed: Oct 01 2019

Issue 1: Installing the InfiniteWP admin panel on a Pantheon hosted site is not possible, because the plugin hardcodes the database credentials and uses a custom port in the URL. Our platform offers database credentials and offers them as an environment variable, and does not allow web access on ports other than 80 and 443.

Issue 2: Cannot remotely update core, or install/update themes and plugins in the Test and Live environments.

Solution: Due to the read only nature of Test and Live environments, remote updates can only be done in Dev, then deployed to Test and Live environment. Consider using a Custom Upstream or WP Site Network instead if you are deploying similar codebase, theme and plugins for a group of sites hosted on Pantheon.


Issue: The Instashow plugin relies on query parameters that are not compatible with Pantheon's Edge Cache. See PANTHEON_STRIPPED for more information. This inhibits the ability to set the authorization token required to make the plugin function.

iThemes Security

Last reviewed: Feb 10 2020

Issue 1: The "File Change Detection" check in iThemes Security warns site admins when files are modified. On Pantheon, automated backups will trigger this warning.

Solution: Disable the "File Change Detection" component of the plugin. Code files in the Test and Live environments are not writable, so this is not a security risk on Pantheon.

Issue 2: iThemes Security attempts to modify nginx.conf, .htaccess and wp-config.php. Components that need write access to these files will not work since nginx.conf cannot be modified and code files on the Test and Live environments are not writable.

Solution: Modifications to wp-config.php should be done in Dev or Multidev environments, then deployed forward to Test and Live.

Maintenance Mode

Issue: Maintenance Mode causes a redirect loop on all pages for logged out users when the maintenance mode option is checked.

Solution: If you are locked out of your site, wp-login.php will still function and you can login to disable the maintenance mode plugin.

ManageWP worker

Last reviewed: Oct 12 2018

Issue 1: Error when adding a site in the ManageWP dashboard:

Site could not be added - Bad HTTP response (403 Forbidden)

This error sometimes leads users to believe that ManageWP's IP addresses need to be allowlisted on the platform.

Solution: Pantheon does not block any IPs, and there is nothing that would require an allowlist. Most likely there is a security plugin that temporary blocks the connection, or a conflicting plugin like those listed here. Temporary disable all other plugins, or the security plugins, then try adding your site again. For full troubleshooting, consult the ManageWP troubleshooting page.

Issue 2: Cannot remotely update core, or install/update themes and plugins in the Test and Live environments.

Solution: Due to the read only nature of Test and Live environments, remote updates can only be done in Dev, then deployed to Test and Live environment. Consider using a Custom Upstream or WP Site Network instead if you are deploying similar codebase, theme and plugins for a group of sites hosted in Pantheon.

Issue 3: Cannot remotely update core, or install/update theme and plugins in the Dev environment.

Solution: Make sure you are in SFTP mode instead of Git mode.

Monarch Social Sharing

Issue: Seems to break WP-CLI, which is used by many of our workflows (clone, clear cache).

New Relic Reporting for WordPress

Last reviewed: May 08 2019

Issue: This plugin sets up redundant configurations (appname and framework) with the Pantheon New Relic configuration, resulting in new applications in New Relic. This behavior may break compatibility with New Relic integrations such as QuickSilver scripts.

Last reviewed: Dec 06 2019

Issue: This plugin stores full file paths to the options table, which breaks across multiple application containers.

Solution: A user patch has been submitted to the plugin maintainers.


Last reviewed: Dec 19 2019

Issue: This plugin adds a cache-busting cookie (ex. pll_language=en) for each request.

Solution: Define the constant PLL_COOKIE to false in wp-config.php to remove the cookie:

define('PLL_COOKIE', false)

The value of PLL_COOKIE defaults to pll_polylang. This defines the name of the cookie used by Polylang to store the visitor's language. When PLL_COOKIE is set to false, Polylang does not set any cookie. Be aware that in this case some features of the plugin may not work completely. For example, the login page will not be translated.

See the plugin documentation for more information on its PHP constants.

Query Monitor

Issue: Creates a symlink with an absolute path, which will only work on the appserver where the plugin was installed. The plugin is not fully designed for cloud or multi server environments.

Alternatives: Pantheon has tools in place to monitor database queries:

Object Sync for Salesforce

Last reviewed: Aug 24 2018

Issue: The Object Sync for Salesforce plugin adds dependencies using Composer, and one of these dependencies provides a .gitignore file which prevents files from being picked up by Git. This leads to problematic deployments as not all code moves forward to Test and Live.

Solution: Remove the .gitignore file from the object-sync-for-salesforce/vendor/pippinsplugins/wp-logging directory.


Last reviewed: Jan 17 2019

Issue: Customers have reported issues with 404 logging creating large database tables, reducing site performance.

Solution: Consider using PHP code to set up your redirects. See Configure Redirects for more information.

Revive Old Post

Issue: Revive Old Post does not set a proper callback via OAuth and the Twitter module. It attempts to use ["SERVER_NAME"] instead of the recommended ["HTTP_HOST"]. See SERVER_NAME and SERVER_PORT on Pantheon.

SendGrid Subscription Widget

Last reviewed: Oct 13 2018

Issue: The email confirmation link sent from the Subscription Widget goes to a redirect loop (see the open issue on wp.org). The link created uses a URL GET parameter __sg_api, which has double underscores. The platform strips this type of parameter to improve caching performance.

Solution: Manually change the the parameter __sg_api to any variable (like sg_api) without double underscores as prefix in the following lines of sendgrid-email-delivery-simplified/lib/class-sendgrid-mc-optin.php:

  • Line 25: $vars[] = '__sg_api';
  • Line 40: if( isset( $wp->query_vars['__sg_api'] ) )
  • Line 146: $confirmation_link = site_url() . '/?__sg_api=1&token=' . $token;


This workaround may potentially break again with the next plugin update, and you will need to manually reapply the modification.

SmartCrawl Pro

Last reviewed: Oct 17 2018

Issue: The sitemap URL linked by the plugin produces a 500 Internal Server Error on Test and Live environments. This results in a PHP error: class not found WP_Filesystem_Direct. See more details about the issue.

Solution: Define FS_METHOD.

Alternative plugins that have an XML sitemap feature that works well on the platform include:


Issue: TimThumb is no longer supported or maintained.

TubePress Pro

Issue: Sites running PHP version 5.3 produce a WSOD after activating this plugin.

Solution: Upgrade your site's PHP version to 5.5, 5.6, or 7.0.

Unbounce Landing Pages

Last reviewed: Feb 13 2019

Issue: Click to call conversions aren't tracking even if the pages are not cached because the cookies are being stripped.

Solution: Usually these type of issues can be solved if the cookie name can be renamed with a prefix starting with STXKEY_, but it is inadvisable to modify the plugin directly. It is suggested by the Unbounce team to separate your Pantheon site domain (eg. example.com) and the Unbounce landing page in a subdomain (e.g., unbounce.example.com), because your Unbounce landing pages can't live at exactly the same URL as your homepage. See the outlined solution here or get in touch with Unbounce support for more help.

UNLOQ Two Factor Authentication (2FA)

Last reviewed: Oct 08 2018

Issue: This widget does not work on this domain error message shown after deploying plugin across environments on Pantheon. This is because the API credentials used on the original environment are being used on a new environment URL, which is not allowed by the plugin. This is by design.

Solution: Manually change unloq_credentials key in thewp_options table. Alternatively, you can re-create an application by resetting your plugin installation (deactivate, delete entries, etc.).

For an alternative 2FA plugin, see Secure Your Site with Two-Factor Authentication.

Unyson Theme Framework

Last reviewed: Oct 05 2018

Issue: This plugin has an internal extension system which installs additional files aside from the plugin itself. Some of those extensions have an additional .gitignore file that prevents it from being deployed to Test and Live environment. See this GitHub issue for more information.

Solution: When using these Unyson Extensions, manually delete the .gitignore files in the corresponding locations:

Page builder:

  • wp-content/plugins/framework/extensions/shortcodes/.gitignore
  • wp-content/plugins/framework/extensions/shortcodes/extensions/page-builder/.gitignore

WordPress Shortcodes:

  • wp-content/plugins/unyson/framework/extensions/shortcodes/.gitignore

Translate Press:

  • wp-content/plugins/unyson/framework/extensions/shortcodes/.gitignore


  • wp-content/plugins/unyson/framework/extensions/events/.gitignore


  • wp-content/plugins/brizy/vendor/twig/twig/.gitignore

Visual Composer: Website Builder

Last reviewed: Aug 27 2018

Issue: This plugin fails to download additional assets during the internal plugin activation procedure on Test and Live environments.

Solution 1: New sites, without existing Test and Live environments: If this plugin is installed and activated on a new site before the Test and Live environments are created, it will properly transfer all assets and database settings to the additional environments.

Solution 2: Sites with existing Test and Live environments: To activate the plugin on sites with existing Test and Live environments, define FS_METHOD.

Weather Station

Issue: This module uses php-intl, which is not currently supported by Pantheon.


Last reviewed: Jan 10 2018

Issue: The "batch upload" process can fail during large uploads. The platform has a 120 second timeout limit for scripts, and large upload processes can hit this limit.

Solution 1: The suggested workaround is to clone the site locally, import the items, then sync the database back up to the platform.

Solution 2: If you don't have a local copy, SFTP into any environment's wp-content/uploads folder and upload the CSV file that you wish to import. Under the advanced settings of the WooCommerce import, specify the exact path where you uploaded the CSV file and import from there:

Enter the path to the CSV on the Import products from a CSV file page

There is a feature request on WooCommerce's GitHub page for a WP-CLI import command which would be less prone to timeouts. To express your interest to the developers, click the thumbs up on the feature request.

Issue 2: A change introduced in WooCommerce 3.6.0 breaks template loading in environments with multiple application containers.

Solution: The issue and a few workarounds possible are described in this WooCommerce Issue We hope this issue will result in future code changes to WooCommerce so mitigations are not needed.


Issue 1: This plugin checks WP_MEMORY_LIMIT, which defaults to 40MB, instead of ini_get('memory_limit'), creating this notice:


Solution: Add the following line to wp-config.php:

  define('WP_MEMORY_LIMIT', '256M');


Issue 1: Enabling the Live Traffic tracking feature within Wordfence sends cookies which conflict with platform-level page caching.

Solution: Disable Wordfence-generated cookies by disabling Live Traffic within the Wordfence options page. See the WordPress support forum for details.

Issue 2: The Wordfence firewall expects specific write access to wp-content/wflogs during activation. Adding a symlink does not mitigate this, so using the Wordfence firewall is not supported on the platform. This has been reported as an issue within the plugin support forum.

Issue 3: The Wordfence firewall installs a file called .user.ini that includes wordfence-waf.php from the absolute path which uses the application container's ID. These paths will change from time to time due to routine platform maintenance. When a container is migrated and when this plugin is deployed to another environment the absolute path is no longer valid resulting in a WSOD. This has been reported as an issue within the plugin support forum.

WordPress Social Login

Issue 1: This plugin attempts to access PHP native sessions before WordPress has been bootstrapped, which prevents the Pantheon PHP native sessions plugin from being called. This leads to a 500 error when authenticating with external services.

Solution: While not recommended, you can add the following lines to wp-config.php before the first call to session_start:

if (defined( "PANTHEON_BINDING" )) {
  include_once( "/srv/bindings/". PANTHEON_BINDING ."/code/wp-blog-header.php" );

Please note: You will need to make this change every time the plugin is updated.

Issue 2: This plugin creates a session on every page, which can prevent page level caching.


Last reviewed: May 18 2020

Issue 1: As with other caching plugins, this conflicts with Pantheon's Advanced Page Cache. The caching feature can be disabled so other features like file optimization, media, etc. can be used side-by-side. Note that if not disabled, WP-Rocket will auto-create the advanced-cache.php file.


  1. In SFTP mode, install the WP-Rocket plugin to the dev environment by uploading via SFTP or from the WP dashboard.

  2. Activate the plugin from the dashboard.

  3. Disable WP-Rocket caching by finding the WP_CACHE value defined by WP-Rocket in wp-config.php, and setting it to false:

    define('WP_CACHE', false);
  4. Optional on writable environments: The WP-Rocket plugin automatically tries to set WP_CACHE to true in wp-config.php, if it is writable. To prevent this behavior on Dev and Multidev environments, you can optionally add this plugin helper plugin, which disables the attempted write.

Issue 2: WP-rocket assumes write access to read-only file paths in Pantheon.

Solution: Create symlinks as noted above.

WPBakery: Page Builder

Last reviewed: Sep 14 2018

Issue: The Custom CSS and Design Options pages of the plugin (?page=vc-custom_css, ?page=vc-color) try to create new files when saved. Due to problems related to incorrect FS_METHOD, files are not created or saved in the expected folder, wp-content/uploads/js_composer.

Solution: Define FS_METHOD.

WP All Import / Export

Last reviewed: Oct 30 2018

Issue 1: Large batch processes can fail if they take longer than the platform will allow. See Timeouts on Pantheon for more information.

Solution: To avoid hitting a timeout, you can try:

  • Splitting the import or export into smaller parts
  • Set the plugin to only process 1 or 2 records per iteration

Issue 2: Uploading large import files hits the 59 second timeout, or you're getting invalid file paths.

Solution: You can upload the import file directly to the plugin's designated writable path wp-content/uploads/wpallimport/files/. When creating a new import using existing file, the file uploaded should appear there as an option .

Issue 3: Upload count does not match the import file.

Solution: Under WP All Import Settings, you can:

  • Clean up temporary files
  • Lower the chunk size to less than 1000
  • Check the Enable Stream Reader

WP Migrate DB

Last reviewed: Oct 17 2018

Issue: On Test and Live environments, the Compatibility settings cannot be configured because this feature requires write access to wp-content/mu-plugins. This issue prevents plugins from being included in DB exports and search-and-replace tasks.

Solution: The normal search-and-replace and DB export functions of this plugin work, but will leave all plugins disabled while in operation. If a specific plugin is required to remain active during the DB export and search-and-replace operations, add a filter for it as described in the plugin's debugging page.

WPML - The WordPress Multilingual Plugin

Last reviewed: Oct 22 2019

Issue 1: Locking an environment prevents WPML from operating and returns the following error: It looks like languages per directories will not function.

Solution: Make the environment public within the Site Dashboard. For details, see Security on the Pantheon Dashboard.

Issue 2: When registering the plugin, accessing /wp-admin/plugin-install.php?tab=commercial returns "Sorry, you are not allowed to access this page".

Solution: Activate the plugin individually for each environment you want to use the plugin with, as it requires a separate key for each domain. Instead of clicking on Purchase a subscription or enter an existing site key, use the Configure WMPL button:

The Configure WMPL Button

You can also add the registration keys to wp-config.php:

define( 'OTGS_INSTALLER_SITE_KEY_WPML', 'your-site-key' );

Learn more in the WPML Guide.

Issue 3: Upon activating WPML String Translation plugin, you may see this error:

WPML String Translation is attempting to write .mo files with translations to folder:


This folder appears to be not writable. This is blocking translation for strings from appearing on the site. To resolve this, please contact your hosting company and request that they make that folder writable. For more details, see WPML's documentation on troubleshooting .mo files generation.

Solution 1:

  1. In wp-config.php, add the following after the define('WP_TEMP_DIR', $_SERVER['HOME'] .'/tmp'); line:

    define('WP_LANG_DIR', $_SERVER['HOME'] .'/files/languages');
  2. Create the languages directory inside /files for each environment.

Solution 2:

Create a symlink for wp-content/languages pointing to wp-content/uploads/languages. See Using Extensions That Assume Write Access for more information.

Yoast SEO

Last reviewed: Jun 12 2018

Issue: The redirects for Yoast SEO setting will detect two options for redirect methods, "PHP", and "Web Server". The Web Server option expects write access to the nginx.conf file, which is not writable on Pantheon.

Solution: Only use the "PHP" redirect method.

YotuWP Easy YouTube Embed

Last reviewed: Nov 27 2019

Issue: The plugin asks for SFTP credentials after installation.

Solution: Define FS_METHOD.

WordPress Themes

Self-Updating Themes

Several WordPress themes, including Jupiter, Nanosoft, and Uncode, present a form requesting FTP credentials in order to automatically update its components. This will appear on Dev, Test and Live environments and can be hidden with CSS, but is still present.

The form can be disabled by adding the following to wp-config.php, above the line /* That's all, stop editing! Happy Pressing. */:

/** Disable theme FTP form */
define('FS_METHOD', 'direct');
define('FS_CHMOD_DIR', ( 0755 & ~ umask() ) );
define('FS_CHMOD_FILE', ( 0755 & ~ umask() ) );
define('FTP_BASE', __DIR__);
define('FTP_CONTENT_DIR', __DIR__ .'/wp-content/');
define('FTP_PLUGIN_DIR', __DIR__ .'/wp-content/plugins/');


Last reviewed: Jun 19 2019

Issue: This theme throws a PHP Fatal error in its settings page for Dev's and Multidev's Git mode, Test and Live.

Solution: This theme assumes write access to theme folders wp-content\themes\uncode\core\assets\css and wp-content\themes\uncode\library\css for it to work properly in git mode. For additional details, see Using Extensions That Assume Write Access.

WordPress Functions


Issue: Adding a submenu page to the Tools main menu using WordPress roles and capabilities that would read or write files to core, themes, or plugins, is not supported.

For example, the install_plugins capability isn't present on the Test or Live environment, therefore menus created with it will not display. For example:

hook = add_management_page( 'My WP Tool Page', 'My WP Tool',
  'install_plugins', 'mywptool', array( $this, 'admin_page' ), '' );

add_action( "load-$hook", array( $this, 'admin_page_load' ) );

This is because write permissions are restricted in Test and Live per the Pantheon Workflow.

Solution: You can use another capability such as read_private_posts instead.

The list of WordPress roles and capabilities that should not be relied upon include:

  • update_core
  • update_plugins
  • update_themes
  • install_plugins
  • install_themes
  • upload_plugins
  • upload_themes
  • delete_themes
  • delete_plugins
  • edit_plugins
  • edit_themes


Issue: The function wp_filesystem->get_contents() can fail when an environment is in Git mode (as Test and Live always are) because it is aware of filesystem-level permissions which are restricted in this mode.

Solution: As described in this StackExchange answer, for cases where file ownership doesn't matter this function could be replaced with file_get_contents(). This is true of most cases where the file in question is only being read, not written to.

Other Issues

Plugins and themes will not work on Pantheon if they:

  • Require Apache.
  • Require customized .htaccess files.
  • Need to modify Nginx configuration files.
  • Require PostgreSQL or other non-MySQL compatible databases.